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  • Sofia Jayne

The Tannery’s DIY community

Updated: Nov 21, 2023

How people have come together to make something from nothing at the Preston Skatepark.

Fresh slabs of concrete covered in graffiti, a few piles of rubble and some stray couches; the furnishing of The Tannery DIY skatepark. Situated on a vacant lot in Preston, this concrete site is much more than just a previously abandoned block. It is home to a community.

Over the last 10 years or so, number 3 Newman Street has been a builder’s nightmare. The block is situated on contaminated land from its days as a functioning tannery throughout the 20th century, which means it must first be decontaminated before being built upon.

However, over the last month news has reached the streets that The Tannery’s story will come to an end. The land has been bought by a big company and they plan to build apartments. The agent who sold the land confirmed this over the phone to upstart.

For over a decade word on the street was that no one would be building on it anytime soon, so skaters made their claim and the vacant lot became known as one of Australia’s best DIY skateparks. Around 2013 a group who called themselves UNO, began making their own ramps for the site. They made these by hand with concrete bought from their own pockets.

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